This spin cycle from Sprite\’s Keeper is about guilt. I happen to have several things that I’ve felt guilty about for awhile.
Are you ready to hear them?
Good, get out some tissues, because this might get a little weepy.
When I was in Kindergarten, I had a best friend. My first best friend. We played together all the time. We would go to each other’s houses and have more fun than I think most people ever get to have.
My best friend was a boy. We thought nothing of this at the time, why shouldn’t boys and girls play together? We liked each other very much and had lots in common. Our parents also liked each other too, so everyone had a nice time when we got together.
Time passed, and suddenly it wasn’t so ok for girls and boys to play together. We didn’t play with each other so much anymore. In third grade we got to be in the same class again. That was nice. He tried to give me a necklace he got out of a machine. I didn’t take it, because I was embarassed. And now, many years later, I can’t for the life of me figure out why. I guess I didn’t want him to like me that way. I just wanted a friend.
More time passed, and I moved away. I made new friends, but really none as good and true as he had been. It doesn’t take long to forget someone when you’re that age, and while I never forgot him, I am ashamed to admit that I never wrote or called.
Until one day, when my mom got a phone call from his mother. Could we come to his birthday party? A very special birthday party? Why was this birthday so special, you ask?
Because he had brain cancer, and it might be the last birthday he ever had.
We went. I was nice, but I tried to act more grown-up than I really was. I was aloof. I wish now that I had hugged him as tight as I could. I wish I had had the courage to voice that this was hard for me, because until then, I had never truly believed that kids got so sick they might die. I had seen it on tv, even heard about it happening in my family years before I was born, but I had never seen it in person.
A little time passed, and we got another phone call. He was having seizures, and this might not be bad, it might mean that the tumors were getting smaller. I really hoped they would. I wish that I had told him that I hoped they would go away.
A little more time passed, and we got another phone call. He had died.
I cried, but I didn’t let anyone see.
My mom tried to get me to go to his funeral. I wouldn’t go. I couldn’t tell how this scared me, how it really made me feel. My mom went. I really wish now that I had gone.
So now, I want to tell him that I’m so sorry. I’m sorry that I wasn’t half the friend to him that he was to me. I’m sorry that I didn’t call, or write, or even really say goodbye. I hope that he knows that I still care, that there aren’t many days that go by when I don’t think of him. I hope that he is having a blast in Heaven. I hope that maybe, just maybe, he knows how I really feel, and I hope that he can forgive me for being a stupid 12 year old girl. Because I am sorry, and I don’t know if I can ever not feel guilty about the way I acted.
I hope he knows how glad I am that he was my first best friend.